Conditions & Limitations

Personal Growth Magazine

– You can listen to this article here.

Are you putting “conditions” on your motivation or even your happiness for that matter?

Are you holding yourself back by thinking limiting thoughts like …
– “If this thing gets too hard, I’ll just quit.”
– “Things aren’t working out like I planned, so this thing is just too messy.”
– “These setbacks are demoralizing and are causing me extra work.”
– “I’m just not feeling excited about this anymore.” …or any other such excuses or complaints?

What you are doing is placing expectations of perfection on your aspirations or goals. You’re setting yourself up to easily get discouraged and quit. You’re placing conditions on your enthusiasm. You’re thinking that if something isn’t easy or fun, then it isn’t worth doing.

This very close to an “all-or-nothing” mindset. You’re saying to yourself, “If it all isn’t just right, then I’m not doing ANY of it anymore.” This is a type of extreme thinking. You think your experiences need to be totally good or it’s totally bad and you’re no longer motivated.

This mindset distortion sets an unreasonable rule or condition by which any outcome less than 100% equates to 0%. It’s easy to see how all-or-nothing thinking can lead to a lot of harsh negative judgments about your mission and even yourself, lowering self-esteem in the process.

As an example, let’s say you were motivated to lose some weight. Then, one day at a restaurant, you cheated on your diet and ate a very fattening dessert. You say to yourself, “I knew I couldn’t do it. It’s too hard to resist temptation when it’s right there on the menu. I guess my diet is over.”

When you should have said to yourself, “One dessert doesn’t erase the success I’ve had with my diet. I’ve made significant changes and things won’t always go perfectly. I’m not going to let this one slip-up ruin the progress I’ve made in my previous 5 days.”

So, the lessons here are: There is no such thing as perfection. There is no such thing as everything being easy. There is no such thing as being totally problem-free. And, there is no such thing as feeling upbeat all the time. Life can get messy, even stinky. If you can accept that and roll with it, then you can maintain a consistent level of motivation and move forward with your projects.

Motivation shouldn’t rely on unrealistic expectations or how you feel emotionally about something. Motivation should be about making a firm decision to achieve something and doing whatever it takes to accomplish it. Success requires determination and persistence, even when things don’t go as planned.

So, hang in there and DON’T QUIT!